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Life has a way of bringing out the best in us. For some, it could be learning your calling. For others, it might be finding your way. Occasionally, when both come together, a surprising epiphany occurs.

Hi, my name is Andy Johnson. I grew up in New London, Wisconsin but my story actually began in South Korea. I was adopted when I was a few months old. My adopted parents were remarkable people, because of them, I was blessed to be raised by learning about both cultures. This set the stage to look at things from multiple perspectives.

Growing up I was surrounded by music. It seemed a natural fit that beyond high school, I would go on to become a music major. But life has a way of changing the path you believed you were meant to travel. And so, it was for me.

I am a survivor of a devastating accident. Momentarily left with a host of severe injuries, the diagnosis was that I would never walk again. But here is where the power of the mind and soul can sustain a person.

The challenge to live the life I wanted was strong within me. Coupled with a life lesson of never giving up, I was motivated to make my life as I had planned. However, an interesting added benefit took place which totally surprised me.

I came back to beat the odds by not only walking again but returning to UWGB to complete my music degree. It was during this time a mentor in the psychology department suggested I take a class in his field. Long story short, I fell in love with psychology. And in no time, I completed a degree in Psychology.

I would go on to UW-Madison and earn a master’s degree in Rehabilitation Psychology. I also certified as a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor and Licensed Professional Counselor.

Why do I tell you my story? Because we all have a story that needs to be told. If a person is dealing with anxiety, depression, or a traumatic event, they need to tell their story. Plus, it helps if the person they choose to work with is someone who has walked (and still is walking) a difficult walk as well.

One of the greatest lessons I have learned is this…life can be tough. But take heart, for there are people out there who are here to help lift them out of their darkness. My primary goal in life is to assist others in lifting them out of difficult places.

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